Thursday, June 27, 2013

Tearing open 18 Jumbo packs of 2012 Topps baseball

I typically buy all of my boxes from It just happens that they always have great deals on lots of retail packs. I usually snag one lot of rack packs since I'm already paying out the ass for shipping. This time around, I got myself a sealed box of 18 Jumbo retail packs from Topps 2012 Series 2. $34 bucks, can't beat it.

With 36 cards per pack and 18 packs per box, I ended up with 648 cards (Yes I used a calculator). So, if any of you are looking to fill sets from this series, shoot me an e-mail and I'll let you know what else I have. I know I'm late to the Topps 2012 party, but if you're still looking, chances are I may have what you need.

Now, on to the highlights of the packs. My favorites:

Here are the 9 gold parallels that I pulled, and boy are these cards gorgeous. The names I pulled are fantastic too. As a Pirates fan, I was happy to pull Brandon Inge, who hit his first jack as Pirate the other night. Freddy Sanchez is a one of few Pirates middle infielders who has actually been good in the past decade, so he's also a welcomed face. It's the first Clayton Kershaw Parallel I've pulled out of any Topps pack, and I love the way Edwin Encarnacion has been swinging the bat lately. 

I didn't snap a picture of the "Cut Above" dicut inserts that I pulled, but here's a list:

Robinson Cano, Mickey Mantle, Troy Tulowitzki, Roy Halladay, Cal Ripken Jr, Dustin Pedroia, Sandy Koufax, Hank Aaron, Ken Griffey Jr.

These packs (and I believe the series as a whole) was very short on rookies. The only ones worth mentioning are Jed Lowrie, Wade Miley, and Yoenis Cespedes (2x).

I was excited to pull a memorbilia card, which I wasn't necessarily expecting:

According to, the ratio on pulling one of these insert memorabilia cards is 1:103 so it looks like I beat the odds. Very nice card.

Monday, June 24, 2013

2012-13 Panini Threads Basketball Hobby Box Break and Review

After a nice check on payday, I couldn't help but ponder my next hobby box. Panini basketball products are my favorite type of sports card, which you'll see as my blog continues to develop. I've never dabbled in the Threads product line, so I gave it a shot with a hobby box. Guaranteed 3 auto's and a memorabilia card for $73. Can't beat that. Onto the break:

The box

Here's a look at the base cards. I love the Ray Allen card and the way it highlights his move to Miami. All the other base cards in the box were more like the Derrick Rose card. The photos are of perfect quality, and the banner running up the left side of the cards looks great. The color varies per team. Moving to the inserts:

Here we see the "Inside Presence" inserts. Pretty decent names.I dig the backgrounds.

Next is the "Floor Generals" inserts. Unlike above, these cards keep their natural background. I prefer the latter but not a big deal.

"High Flyers" inserts. I love the names I pulled here, Ibaka, J.R. Smith, Rose, and Blake Griffin. All cards have nice action shots on them.

Another line of inserts for this box, the "Century Greats." Love seeing Havilcek get some love here, and what a great picture of Walton. Really cool cards.

Here are the dicut threads cards. A somewhat odd group of names here (L to R): Serge Ibaka, Marc Gasol, Marquis Teague, John Henson, Chris Singleton.

My favorite line of inserts, the "Talented Twosomes." Couldn't be happier with the pulls either, particularly the Knight/Monroe card. What a duo they can be. The Curry/Lee card is a better picture though. Again, photography is clear as day.

The Hits

Tony Parker Jersey- Nice card. No serial number, which is a bit disappointing. It's shame that the Spurs lost the finals, because this guy may have had a shot at the MVP. Probably would have been Tim Duncan.. but one can dream.

Look who it is, again! Another Derrick Williams auto, along with Enes Kanter. For some reason, neither one of these guys excites me too much. Maybe it's because they're both on terrible teams, who knows. I really should not complain though. These guys did go #2 and #3 in the draft, after all. The cards are actually made of wood, and the auto's are on card. No serial numbers :(

Now, why the Jrue Holiday you ask? Take a close look at the silver stripe along the bottom. Every other base card in the box has a bronze stripe (The Ray Allen and D-Rose commons up top are visually misleading, but trust me, they're identical).

So that silver stripe caught my eye. A parallel! My favorite. I flipped the card over and to overwhelming surprise...

BOOM! Hiding in the left hand corner. It's the lowest serial numbered card I've ever owned. Turns out that the stripe isn't silver, it's platinum. Very exciting card from an exciting young player. 

Last but not least, a redemption auto in my final pack:

I can redeem a torn ACL! Poor Gallo. Hope his rehab is going well. It's my understanding that this card will be an on-card auto on one of the jersey style threads cards seen above. I don't believe that it will be numbered.

The checklist for the Team Threads Signatures has some awesome names on it, so seeing that made my heart jump, and seeing Gallo made it un-jump. He deserves some credit though, he's a very consistent scorer and this looks to be a really nice card. I'll probably redeem it sooner than later.

Overall design: The cards themselves satisfy. The photography is professional, and I'm a huge fan of the horizontal banner on the left side of the base cards, it's a creative and looks sharp. Out of all the inserts, I like the Inside Presence the best when I comes to design. 

Box contents: The base set of 150 is very collectable, and you'll be well over halfway to a set with just one box. The base set contains only veterans. The insert sets offer some great variety, from big men to point guards to legends. 

The Hits: This product really comes through. Three autos and a patch card (possibly triple patch) is an awesome ratio for cost. The possibility of pulling low numbered cards ups the ante. 

Positives: Value, card design, variety, autos are on card
Negatives: No rookie base cards, only 5 cards per pack

Rating: 9 out of 10. A staple of Panini Basketball.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

2013 Panini Marquee Hobby Box Break and Review

My first hobby box of the summer is a from my favorite manufacturer of basketball cards- Panini. After some research, I decided to try out a box from the "Marquee" product line.

Not that it's all that important, but I love shape and dimensions of the box itself. It's long rectangular shape makes it easy to put the base cards back in once the box is empty. Easy for storage.

Anyways, on to the highlights of the break: 

Paul George Base #94
Dominique Wilkins "Slam Dunk Legends" #4

(L to R)
Brandon Knight White PETG Group V Rookie #474 
Brandon Knight Holoboard Group II Rookie #244
Anthony Davis Laser Cut Group III Rookie #312

Swirlorama Group I Rookies:
Kemba Walker #162
Kyrie Irving #161
Jimmer Fredette #170

Rookie Signatures:
Derrick Williams #13
Orlando Johnson #70
Lance Thomas #86

Overall design: These cards are really pretty. I included the picture of the Paul George card so you can get an idea of what the base cards look like. Every card is made of thick cardstock, including the base set. The refractor look to the base set is a really nice touch. For those who enjoy collecting base sets, this product is for you. The inserts are also nice cards. The halographic swirl patterns on certain sets adds a "wow factor."

Box contents: With a total of sixteen different sets in the product line, collectors will be getting a great variety in each box. About half of those sets are rookie sets, so expect a lot of young faces in your packs. About 40% of the cards from my box were rookies, so it's safe to say that this product is very rookie-based. The product guarantees 3 auto's, and as you can see, all three of mine were rookies. For those of you who prefer veterans, this isn't a box for you. Veteran cards are sparse, but they are in here, including a set of autos. There is also a 24 card set of coach's autographs, many of whom are legends. It's also important to note that there no memorabilia cards.

The Hits: This product seems to come through with the hits. I'm not ecstatic with mine, but I'm not complaining either. Any product that brings three autos for less than 100 bucks is worth it to me. The Derrick Williams auto was nice to see- here's to hoping he pans out, being the #2 overall pick and all. The Kyrie Irving Swirlorama seems to have some serious value as well.

Positives: Cards design, variety, rookies, value
Negatives: Lack of veterans, lack of serial numbers, autos are stickers

Rating: 8 out of 10. Another great product from Panini.